The U.S. government keeps careful track of statistics and facts about U.S. immigration. The statistics help the U.S. government set policy, keep the general public informed, and help the government create programs that assist the greatest number of immigrants and U.S. citizens. U.S. immigration facts can also be helpful and interesting for potential immigrants and U.S. citizens. Some recent facts that may be of interest include
1) Immigrants are vital to the U.S. economy. Immigrants take on many jobs, from agricultural jobs to high tech and medical jobs. US government statistics have suggested that by the year 2026, there will be a shortage of 20 million workers in the U.S. The Federal Reserve Chairman and other members of the government have noted that a shortage of workers could negatively harm the economy and add to inflation. As a result, some experts in the government are calling for new immigration rules which would make it easier for qualified and skilled immigrant workers to live and work in the US.
2) Illegal immigration continues to be a serious problem. It is estimated that 250,000 to 300,000 illegal immigrants enter the U.S. each year. In more than 50% of these cases, the immigrants enter the U.S. legally but overstay their visas. In about half of cases, the undocumented immigrants enter the US illegally. It is difficult for the U.S. governments to obtain concrete data about undocumented immigrants, since they are, by definition, not recorded or documented in the U.S. However, some organizations believe that there are over 10 million illegal immigrants in the U.S. as of 2011.
3) According to the Population Reference Bureau, about 70 000 non-U.S. citizens arrive in the U.S. everyday. About 60 000 are travelers, business people, or students. Another 2200 are refugees or immigrants who are slated to be green card holders. About 5000 are illegal immigrants.
4) About 10.4% of the U.S. population was not born in the U.S. As of 2000, about half of this population is born in Latin America and about one-quarter is born in Asia. This is a marked contrast with the start of the twentieth century, when most U.S. immigrants came from Europe.